Daniel Craig is an actor well-known for his captivating action scenes in the world of 007. He had some relative success before his fame skyrocketed in 2006 after landing the role of the sixth James Bond.
But Craig had to win Bond fans over as he’s fair haired and doesn’t “look like a Bond” to many, and his action scenes, especially in his first Bond movie Casino Royale really won fans over.
During his stint as Ian Fleming’s spy, he revolutionized Bond, giving him a modern take. His Bond was similar to that of Timothy Dalton – a more grounded and realist, presenting him as a more flawed and relatable character who navigates through an underworld far removed from the classic 007 universe.
Of course, that was the producers decision, and it led to Daniel Craig receiving his fair share of the critics. That said, he still managed to maintain and even improve on the electrifying, action scenes James Bond movies are known for.
For some Daniel Craig was too much of a softie, whereas for other he was a perfect combination of blockbuster action and a look into a complex character’s different personalities and struggles.
Daniel Craig finally hung up his Walther PPK after No Time To Die (2021) and 16 years. And even with mixed reviews, he made some memorable moments for Bond fans, with most Bond fans holding him in high regard.
A Young Daniel Craig
Daniel Wroughton Craig was born on 2 March 1968 in Chester. His mother Carol Olivia was an art teacher, and his father Timothy John Wroughton Craig was in the Navy before becoming a pub landlord later in life. Craig has an older sister, Lea, who was born 3 years before Daniel.
Craig’s parent divorced when he was young and he moved to and grew up in Wirral with his mum and sister. He was always into acting and took to drama at school, performing in all the plays.
After leaving school in 1984 he was accepted into the National Youth Theatre in London, and went on tours to Valencia and Moscow. The young, up-and-coming actor then joined Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1988, starring in many Shakespeare productions and finally graduating in 1991.
Craig then moved into television and cinema and earned small parts in both from 1992. After several parts in smaller budget films, Craig’s first major breakthrough was in 2001 when he starred in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider as treasure hunter Alex West.
There were other regular roles, such as a drug dealer in Layer Cake, but nothing that made Daniel Craig a global star, or even known to most, until he won the right to star as the sixth James Bond in 2006.
Daniel Craig in Casino Royale
After a lukewarm reception to Daniel Craig’s casting as Bond, Casino Royale was really a make or break movie for both him and the producers. And boy did it win.
It was a new beginning all around, and there were no gadgets, no Q or Miss Moneypenny. There was no Bond theme either until the credits rolled up at the end that triggered in the new beginning.
The movie was thinly based on Ian Fleming’s first novel, Casino Royale, but with added action and thicker plots. The opening scene is one of the best of all time and after watching it even Craig’s most ardent of critics would have been enthused for the rest of the film.
The opening scene is nothing short of riveting and the exhilerating chase sets the pace for the entire movie, as Bond then meets Vesper Lynd (Eva Green) in a game of high-stakes poker at the Casino Royale.
Bond’s mission is to bankrupt Le Chiffre (Mads Mikkelsen), the terrorist financier who bankrolled an attack against MI6. It soon becomes clear that Bond and Lynd have more than just business between them, as their intense chemistry ignites.
Casino Royale is a classic James Bond movie and one of the best in the whole Bond series. The plot is action-packed thrilling chase scenes and spectacular stunts, and of course Bond’s departure from the alpha male that we all love (and still miss).
Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace
Quantum Solace is the sequel to Casino Royale, or as Daniel Craig put it: that awkward second album. It follows on where Casino Royale left off, Bond is back in the 00 ranks.
He’s out for revenge after his new love Vesper Lynd was killed in Casino Royale, and 007 goes on a mission to uncover the identity of her killer and avenge her death.
There’s still no SPECTRE, and instead a Quantum – a criminal organisation led by a powerful tycoon Dominic Greene, who’s looking to control Bolivia’s water supply and exploit its government.
Bond goes to South America and meets up with old pals, and attempts to submerge his anguish of losing Vesper. Trying to concentrate on the job in front of him, even though M and his other companions think his state of mind makes him a liability.
Bond is ordered not to carry out the role and Agent Strawberry Fields is sent to make sure he doesn’t. She becomes the latest Bond girl as they end up making love in a step back to Bond’s masculinity.
She’s killed by Quantum and he then teams up with the next Bond girl Camille Montes, and he also teams up with old friend Felix Leiter as they take down Quantum’s plans.
The action scenes are ok, even if they’re not fantastic. Daniel Craig plays a good part, but it’s just not Bond enough for fans. That’s not to say Quantum of Solace isn’t a good, film because it is, it’s just nowhere near as good as its predecessor.
Daniel Craig in Skyfall
If Casino Royale isn’t your favourite Daniel Craig Bond movie then Skyfall probably is. Still different from Bonds from earlier decades, Skyfall is Daniel Craig’s most Bond-like movie of them all.
Back are Q and Miss Moneypenny, who starts out as a field agent and accidentally shoots Bond. There are plenty of scenes and allusions reminiscent of previous Bonds and several of Bond’s famous one liners. The best chargeback is when Bond is escorting M away out of danger and decides to switch cars.
Q and Miss Moneypenny make a triumphant return as Q provides Bond with the tools, gadgets and gizmos he needs to save the world, while Moneypenny starts out as an agent in the field before ‘accidently’ shooting him – never fear though she soon takes up residence at her desk job.
There are plenty of classic scenes that evoke nostalgia for older bond movies sprinkled throughout along with some iconic Bond one-liners. The most nostalgic scene is when M has be escorted away from danger and Bond decides to switch cars.
When the light is switched on in the garage to expose the timeless DB5, the iconic Bond theme song softly echoes in the background. M voices complains ‘It’s hardly inconspicuous,’ followed by yet another moan as she was tossed around while they drove off through London in the classic Aston Martin.
Daniel Craig captures another moment of classic nostalgia, asking M ‘Are you going to complain all the way?’ while unveiling the DB5’s classic ejector seat that Q had given him in Goldfinger (1964).
Of course, M continues to moan as they drive off quickly with Bond’s signature tune climaxing in the background. This knowing wink back towards past Bonds seen throughout Skyfall was well received among die-hard fans.
Watch Daniel Craig as Bond threaten M with the ejector seat
Skyfall was much more than a tribute to classic Bond scenes, and also featured Javier Bardem’s interpretation of one of the best villains in the series – Raoul Silva.
The majority of the action unfolds at an isolated boyhood home in Scotland as Bond instructs Q to leave a track so that Silva can find them.
As expected from any great 007 instalment, Skyfall illustrates heart-pounding chase scenes and dynamic fight sequences taking place within its Scottish backdrop – all while presenting a new version of James Bond with deeper emotional depth than ever before.
Silva takes his last breath after Bond throws a knife in his back, while M, sorrowfully succumbs to earlier wounds inflicted by Silva. All considered, Skyfall is an classic Bond film that resonated with new viewers and Bond aficionados alike.
Daniel Craig in Spectre
Spectre is the 24th James Bond film and the fourth with Daniel Craig as MI6 agent 007 James Bond. The film saw mixed reviews, with some critics praising Craig’s performance as Bond and the film’s action sequences, while others criticized the plot and pacing. But it does have a fanstastic opening scene.
In the film, Bond receives a cryptic message from his past that sends him on a trail to uncover sinister organization, SPECTRE. While Ralph Fiennes playing M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the truth behind SPECTRE.
Along the way, Bond encounters Madeleine Swann, the daughter of his old nemesis Mr. White, who helps him uncover the organization’s true purpose.
Craig’s performance as Bond was praised by some critics. He brings a sense of depth and complexity to the character, and his tough, no-nonsense portrayal of Bond is well-suited to the more grounded and realistic tone of the modern Bond.
The opening scene is an iconic chase that ends up in a fight with helicopter. The scene takes place during the film’s opening sequence, in which Bond is pursuing a target through the crowded streets and markets of Mexico City during the Day of the Dead celebration.
After a series of chases and close calls, Bond confronts his target on the roof of a building, where a helicopter arrives to pick up the target. A tense and destructive fight ensues, with Bond and the target battling it out on the roof while the helicopter tries to take off.
Watch the Spectre helicopter opening scene…
Overall, Spectre is a solid entry in the James Bond library. While it may not be the most innovative or groundbreaking film in the series, it delivers on the Bond trademark mix of action, suspense, and glamour.
Craig’s performance as Bond is a highlight, and his irregular fight against old villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld reignites, but somehow as Bond’s long lost foster brother. Strange, but still it adds depth and more interest to the plot.
Although Spectre doesn’t quite measure up to Skyfall or Casino Royale, Daniel Craig does a fantastic job portraying the complex character of Bond. And with an exhilarating opening scene and old foe Blofeld back for more, it’s definitely worth a watch.
Daniel Craig in No Time to Die
The sequel to Spectre, No Time to Die, saw Daniel Craig cast a Bond for the last time. Another complex love story with plenty of dynamic fight scenes, it’s another good film, but not his best by a long shot.
The main action begins Bond visits Vesper Lynd’s burial place one last time, he is ambushed by SPECTRE officials headed up by henchman Primo. A full-tilt car chase through the streets of Materna, Italy ensues and ends up with Bond and girlfriend Madeleine circled.
With the Aston Martin DB5 getting peppered by bullets, Craig presses a button and the headlights transform into rotating machine guns. Bond then expertly drives in donuts as the machine guns take out all those that surround them.
An interesting take is Bond’s replacement for his 007 role in the movie. After hanging up his licence to kill, a female gets his place as 007. Ultra-covert Black Ops, Nomi, picks Bond up and he thinks his luck is in, only for him to discover who she is. She warns him not to interfere in her investigations.
Of course, Bond doesn’t listen and they clash several times through the plot, but there’s begrudging respect between the two and it adds to the story. There’s plenty of character scrutiny with a mix of exhilarating action, which pretty much sums up Daniel Craig’s reign as Bond.
The story is a bit complex, as is Bond’s character, but there’s a twist at the end as Bond is infested by villain Lyutsifer Safin with the nanobot, that will take out anyone connected to SPECTRE. He realizes then if he goes back to Madeleine and her daughter, they will die, and so he chooses to remain on Safin’s lair, and meet his death.
The Highs and Lows of The Sixth James Bond
It’s the end of Daniel Craig as Bond, and an era that’s probably encountered as many mixed reviews as any other actor to play Ian Fleming’s special agent. No doubt, Daniel Craig is an excellent actor and delivered many memorable action scenes during his tenure.
Anyone who says Casino Royale or Spectre is their favourite Bond movie will make an excellent case. But the direction this “modern” Bond is going has disappointed many Bond afficionados.
But that’s not Daniel Craig’s fault. His action scenes are the best. Sure the cinematography technology has improved tenfold since the 1960s, but the reality of the action scenes has been absolutely astounding.
And it’s the action scenes that Daniel Craig will be fondly remembered for in his time as the sixth James Bond.
Daniel Craig Random FAQs
Daniel Craig was born on 2 March 1968, which makes him 54 years old.
Daniel Craig is 5ft 11in, or 178cm
Daniel Craig is married to British actress Rachel Weisz. She was born on 7 March 1970, making her 52. They have 2 children.
Daniel and his family now live in Brooklyn, New York after buying a townhouse there for $6.75m in 2018.
Daniel Craig starred in five Bond movies – Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012), Spectre (2015), and No Time to Die (2021).
Daniel Craig was 38 years old when he starred in Casino Royale, which was released in 2006. In his last film No Time to Die, which was released Daniel Craig would have been 53, five years younger than Roger Moore when he finished.
As of 2023, Daniel Craig has an estimated a net worth of $160 million. He earned an estimated $85.4 million from portraying James Bond over his five movies.
Daniel Craig announced that he would be leaving the role of James Bond after No Time to Die, which was released in 2021. In various interviews, he stated that he felt it was the right time to move on from the role, and that he wanted to focus on other projects.
That’s the 64,000 dollar question that nobody can answer yet. We wait with baited breathe,